Athena Swan Committee

Athena Swan Committee

Carole Thomas 

Senior Equality and Diversity Champion and Chair of the Athena SWAN committee

Carole Thomas Carole joined JIC as a PhD student in 1982 and has experience of working as a Postdoc, a Research Assistant and in scientific admin as Head of the John Innes Centre Directorate.

During her time at the John Innes Centre she has taken three periods of maternity leave and enjoyed being able to work flexibly. She is part of a dual career family and understands the issues and difficulties that arise when trying to juggle a career and look after young children.

Carole is a member of the John Innes Centre Strategy Committee where Equality and Diversity is frequently discussed.

Stephen Bornemann 

Research Leader

Stephen Bornemann Stephen is the Associate Head of the Biological Chemistry Department and a member of a wide range of institute committees.

He has two daughters and has taken paternity leave on two occasions.

Before joining the centre, he carried out a study of the impact of industrial funding on research student experiences at two UK universities in the early 90s and inadvertently uncovered gender inequality. This published work seeded an active interest in gender equality issues and Athena SWAN now provides the opportunity to make a difference.

Kate Conway 

Senior Manager Graduate Studies Office

Kate Conway Kate joined the John Innes Centre as a PhD student in 1988 and has experience of working as a Postdoc, and in higher education administration and management.

She now works for the University of East Anglia based at the John Innes Centre.

During her career she has taken two periods of maternity leave and her ability to balance professional and family commitments has benefited from being able to work part-time and flexibly.

Hannah Daugaard-Hansen 

John Inne Centre HR Manager

Hannah Daugaard-Hansen Since joining the Norwich Biosciences Institute Partnership in March 2012, Hannah has benefited from financial support and study leave to support her in the last year of an LLM Employment Law degree.

She has flexible working arrangements to enable her to balance her professional role and personal role as a mother to three children.


Claire Domoney 

Research Leader representative

Claire Domoney Claire is Head of the Department of Metabolic Biology.

She draws on the experiences and success of several role models from among family and friends, as well as within the John Innes Centre.

She acts as mentor and advisor to students and post-docs, assists with John Innes Centre and UEA undergraduate and post-graduate teaching, and is passionate about supporting undergraduate students in particular in formulating their career choices.


Roy Dunford 

Lab manager representative

Roy Dunford Roy has worked at the John Innes Centre for 22 years as a post-doctoral researcher, Research Assistant and member of the Laboratory Management Team.

In his current role he facilitates the smooth and efficient running of the laboratories and associated support services at the John Innes Centre. He advocates flexibility in working practices and patterns in order to achieve the best outcomes for both his staff and the John Innes Centre.

Roy is part of a dual career family: his wife also works at the John Innes Centre, and together they have benefited from flexible working and have taken paternity and maternity leave.

Samantha Fox 

John Innes Centre Equality and Diversity Champion

Samantha Fox Samantha is a highly skilled Research Assistant who joined the the John Innes Centre in 2000 and has progressed her career through a change of job and via personal promotion.

Samantha acts as an advisor to phD students and has a keen interest in science communication and outreach. She is a STEM ambassador and leads the annual Norwich Biosciences Institute Year 10 Science Camp educational training scheme.

In addition Samantha represents the John Innes Centre on the ResNet committee, the fairness and gender equality network for people working in research, teaching and support roles at the UEA and the Norwich Biosciences Institute.

Anne O’Halleron 

Head of HR

Anne O'Halleron Anne joined the John Innes Centre in April 2012 having worked in HR management and consultancy roles in both the public and private sector.

Anne is responsible for developing the HR strategy and provision of the HR service to the Institute of Foord Research, the John Innes Centre, the Earlham Institute and Norwich Biosciences Institute.

She has championed the equality and diversity agenda in a number of organisations and has been involved in a number of CIPD and government groups set up to identify ways to address equality issues.

Her team is committed to ensuring equality and diversity is embedded across the John Innes Centre, by delivering appropriate training, and supporting our equality and diversity agenda.

Melanie Henri

Admin Support

Melanie Henri Melanie joined the John Innes Centre in 2013 as Committee Administrator after a four-year career break to care for her two young children.

Melanie benefits from family-friendly working hours which enables her to do the school run during term time and maximise time at home during the school holidays by working compressed hours

Dale Sanders, FRS 

John Innes Centre Director

Dale Sanders Dale joined the the John Innes Centre in 2010 after 26 years as an academic at the University of York, the last six of which were as Head of the Biology Department.

During his leadership of Biology, he oversaw the Athena SWAN application that resulted in the first Silver Award to a biosciences department. The importance of career development was recognised by the creation of a new departmental post in the area.

Dale’s awareness of the importance of family-friendly policies in science was enhanced as he raised a family of three daughters alone since 1999.

Karl Syson 

Research Assistant representative

Kyle Syson Karl is a Research Assistant with nearly six years’ experience.

He became a scientist through a non-traditional route, entering engineering after leaving school, but returned to education in his twenties.

Karl is an active member of the Research Assistants Voice committee, championing the views and concerns of Research Assistants, of which the majority are female.


Elizabeth Ingle 

Postdoc Voice representative

Elizabeth joined the John Innes Centre as a post doc in 2012 after completing her PhD at Durham University.

She is employed by the University of East Anglia but is based at the John Innes Centre as part of the Cell and Developmental Biology department.

Elizabeth is the Post Doc Voice representative on the committee and has an interest in gender equality across all roles and career development stages.  

Franziska Kellner

Student Voice representative

Franziska and her family moved from Germany to Norwich in 2012, were she start a PhD in the O'Connor group (Biological Chemistry Department, at the John Innes Centre), her partner joined the Sainsbury Lab and their son a local nursery.

Before that Franziska worked at the Leibniz Institute of Plant genetics and Crop Plant Research after receiving a degree in Horticulture from the University of Applied Sciences, Dresden (Germany).

She represents the Student Voice Committee and has general interest in equal opportunities and a family friendly environment.

JIC Cookie Policy. We use cookies on this site to enhance your user experience. By clicking any link on this page you are giving your consent for us to set cookies. You can find out more about the cookies by clicking here.

Accept cookies